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5* Steve Rogers: Why He Needs Fixing & How to Fix Him

jobob
jobob Posts: 680 Critical Contributor
edited November 2016 in MPQ Suggestions and Feedback
I've had 5* Cap champed since the second run of the Civil War. I also have all of the ohter 5*s champed. And poor Cap is, IMO, at the bottom of the pile. I put him even with or slightly below Silver Surfer (at least SS accelerates with charged tiles, has true healing, and is the only un-stunnable playable character). At the very least, Cap is the most disappointed character, as SS's place at the bottom can be somewhat forgiven due to him being D3's first try at a 5* character.

He is especially poorly equipped when compared to his release counterpart, 5* Iron Man, who is an excellent character. On paper, I thought he looked pretty good, but after playing with him... I just haven't found a way to make him effective.

star.pngstar.pngstar.pngstar.pngstar.png

Cap's problems stem from two sources: First and foremost his powers; Second, and to a much lesser extent, and his "Team Cap" roster.

First, the abilities. The major problem with Cap isn't that just one ability needs a tweak... all 3 are subpar and have core problems that need to be addressed. They also don't effectively feed one another.




token_standard.pngTHE PROBLEM WITH:
yellowflag.png YELLOW:

star.png First off, it's expensive at 13 AP, which isn't necessarily a problem itself, but it's on the high end. It also ends the turn, which is another turn you are prevented from getting AP. Furthermore, it's a countdown as opposed to an instant ability, so you don't even get the benefit of the attack tiles or damage that turn. The stun is essentially worthless at 1 cover even in 1 v 1, since you effectively "lose" a turn to gain 1 back, and due to the CD tiles, your attack tiles aren't even out to get in a free hit. Furthermore, these tiles are removed if you want to use his blue. Even worse, they only power his blue up to 50%- if you are planning to go that route, you need 26 yellow AP and lose 2 turns just to fire the blue at max power. By contrast, IM blue does a good job of doing damage, board shake, AND accelerating his red power.

redflag.png RED:
star.png The damage itself is subpar. 9729 for 9 AP (1081/AP) is actually lower on a per AP basis than the much-lamented SS output at 8178 for 7 AP (1171/AP). And while Cap can make up to 2 shield tiles... that requires having two "Team Cap" teammates, who unfortunately synergize poorly with Cap for the most part. Furthermore, with AP generation being so critical, I am not sure that the charged tiles from SS aren't at least as valuable as the protect tiles. And, once again, it pales in comparison to his 5IM counterpart, as Iron Man does increasing amounts of damage for each additional team member. While both start at around 9k, Cap's damage stays there, while 5IM's nearly triples on a full "Team IM" team. Finally, for some reason, Cap isn't counted as a member of Team Cap, so no shield tile for just him (IM Red by comparison does base damage just for 5IM)

blueflag.png BLUE:
star.png What seems like a great ability is, in practice his most damning one. Don't get me wrong- you can make it work, and it hits hard... but it requires building a team completely around that one skill, and you would come out ahead just putting together a standard team. So far, the best team I have found to use the blue is IM40/MoStorm, to power up Cap Red & Blue, and allow him to feast off Storm's huge number of attack tiles. This is a squishy team, however, and none are Team Cap. Also, for max effectiveness, 8 tiles is a lot to have out at once. Carnage seems like a good choice, but in reality Cap doesn't provide enough protection and healing to offset the damage Carnage does to your own team. Professor X puts out a lot of tiles, but you need someone with low AP moves in the third slot, and if you are running Xavier as a special tile factory, you are losing out on his ability to strengthen those tiles as you are just going to remove him. OML and Phoenix can put out special tiles at a decent clip... but that is the strategy for those characters, so you don't really want to remove them. Waiting on Cap's yellow to go off, which is so expensive, just so you can use blue at 50%. This power also suffers from the lack of synergy with Cap and his "Team Cap" mates. There are not a lot of special tile factories on Team Cap, and the better ones (Nova, Flaptain, Ant-Man) overlap at least 2 colors. Finally- and perhaps most frustratingly- this power has 0 base damage or healing. Meaning you CAN NOT fire it without a special tile on the board. I have gotten into situations where I have enough AP to fire it multiple times, but have already used up my special tiles, and don't have enough red or yellow AP to make more- very frustrating.


...So that's what's wrong. Now here is one man's humble opinion on a few different ways to remedy these shortcomings... on some powers, just one of these one suggestion might fix it, on others, it might require a combination of tweaks. Obviously implementing ALL the suggestions would make him overpowered, but a few of these changes would bring him into balance nicely with the other 5* characters. The most important aspect of this character to change is that you need to allow him to generate more tiles himself to accelerate his blue power.

token_legendary.pngHOW TO FIX:
yellowflag.png YELLOW:

star.png The triple penalty on this power (high cost, CD tiles, and ending the turn) should be reduced. Any two are probably okay, but not all 3.
--- star.png Alternatively, at 5 covers, have the CD tiles be fortified, so that they at least all go off.
star.png Reduce the strength of the tiles, but make more of them. Follow the precedent of OML black strike tiles, which become weaker but more numerous as covers are added. This power should not generate a best-case scenario of 50% of the required tiles for his blue power, ESPECIALLY considering his blue power negates all of these tiles.

redflag.png RED:
star.png Count Cap as a member of "Team Cap" so that this power always creates at least 1 shield tile
star.png Have the damage increase with more "Team Cap" members (again, see 5IM red)
--- star.png Alternatively, give the power something extra... when I see the animation, I always thing an enemy getting bashed with that shield would be stunned, so make it a stun attack.
star.png Replace the shield tile part of the active with passive shield tile generation. Model this power either on the precedent of Luke Cage, and have Cap create a single shield tile at the beginning of the turn (to a max of 1, 2, or 3 depending upon Cap's team members)... OR model it after the OML precedent of adding 1 - 2 tiles when an ally fires a power.
star.png Change the way the "shield" part of the power works completely, and use the fortify mechanic instead to allow Cap to fortify friendly attack, strike, or protect tiles. This could either be done passively, one per turn (increase the max number of total fortified tiles as covers increase), or it could fortify multiple tiles on the board when the power is fired (number increasing as covers increase)

blueflag.png BLUE:
star.png Allow base damage/healing for this power so that it can be fired with no special tiles for a small % of the total possible damage.
star.png Reduce the maximum requirement of 8 friendly tiles to 6 at 5 covers (assuming no other fixes are implemented to allow Cap to create more tiles)
star.png Change the requirements for the type of tile Cap can remove. Options could include friendly Invisibility or Countdown tiles, netural tiles like web tiles or locked tiles... or even allow him to remove enemy tiles to power up this move.


Now, on to the lesser problem of the "Team Cap" roster. Let me say that the problem is mitigated somewhat by the fact that Cap's power (unlike Iron Man) does not get much stronger with more mates on his side. Regardless, with Cap requiring lots of cheap special tiles to be of use, and with no good way of generating them himself at the moment- compounded by the issue that Iron Man has 5* teammates while Cap does not- the "Team Cap" roster needs addressing.



token_standard.pngTHE PROBLEM WITH:
buff_weekly.png HIS 5* TEAMMATES:

Well... this is obvious- he has none. Iron Man and BSS is stronger by itself than almost any 3-man Team Cap combination.

buff_new.pngHIS 4* TEAMMATES:
star.png There is not a lot of synergy between Caps abilities (mainly his blue one) and the abilities of his teammates. When you look at the 4* "Team Cap" roster, you have some characters that generate a decent number of special tiles... Sam Wilson (Yellow), Nova (Yellow, Red, Black), Ant-Man (Blue, Yellow, Purple), Ghostrider (Green, Red). There is, however, a major lack of synergy between these abilities and Cap. For starters, most of these tiles are ones you want to keep out on the board and not use for cannon fodder for Cap's blue. But more importantly... every single one of those characters has a special-tile generating power that overlaps with one of Cap's abilities, leaving only Ant-Man purple, and Ghostrider green as complementary abilities. The only other 4* Team Cap characters with active special tile generation (Punisher, Invisible Woman) only have one color... and it's blue, which directly conflicts with the power you are trying to accelerate. I'm not saying his teammates are bad- quite the contrary, some of the best 4*s are on Cap's side (Nova, PMax, Thoress), just that they offer very little in the way of being a true "teammate" to poor Steve.

buff_normal.pngHIS 3* TEAMMATES:
star.png First of all, in PVP, you are going to get blasted if you take a 3* along in most cases. Again, you have very strong 3* characters (IF, SW, KK)... but they don't add anything specifically to a Cap team. CageFist will ensure that Cap's blue can always fire at 25% power, which I suppose is better than being locked out completely. Falcon can put out a lot of special tiles... but his bread and butter move is strengthening tiles, which is negated by Cap's blue power which will remove those strengthened tiles. Blade is a slow source of special tiles, but unfortunately you have to forego red AP to get them.


...So that's the smaller issue in a nutshell. Thankfully, this would be much less of an issue (outside the 5* problem) if you fix Cap's blue power. That said, here are a few thoughts...

token_legendary.pngHOW TO FIX:
buff_weekly.png HIS 5* TEAMMATES:

star.png Just give him one! While this was obviously an event tied to the Civil War movie- and therefore not necessarily linked to comics- there are a couple choices that make sense. Iron Man has a 5* teammate... Cap needs one as well. In my opinion there are two options that are best suited from the source material (though not necessarily particularly synergistic).
--- star.png Black Suit Spidey. I completley understand the reasoning behind 1*, 2*, and 3* Spider-Man being team Iron Man. However, during the Civil War, Spider-Man switched allegiances, and came over to Captain America's side for the remainder of the Civil War. In fact, it was the seriousness and the weight of the situation that led Spidey to ditch his red and blues and go back to the black suit. This particular version of Spider-Man makes more sense on Team Cap. (To offset, you have to move another 5* to Team Iron Man... a good candidate might be Silver Surfer, who was originally slated to be on Team Iron Man.
--- star.png Old Man Logan. This choice is much more difficult to tie to Cap, as OML obviously doesn't exist yet at the time of Civil War. But the image of Old Man Logan taking up the long-dead Cap's shield to stop Red Skull (who recoils in terror at his nemesis's "return")- and his subsequent decapitation of the villain with Cap's shield- is a highlight of the OML story arc.


buff_normal.pngHIS 3* and 4* TEAMMATES:
star.png This is harder to fix, as you have to find a way to justify putting the characters who can create a lot of special tiles (the best ones probably being PX, Carnage on the 4* level, and MoStorm, DocOc, Daken, on the 3* level) on "Team Cap, some of whom are obviously villains. I think the argument for the X-Men leaning "Pro Cap" is easy to make, as they have been against any form of superhuman registration for some time, but they made it a point to stay out of the Civil War, so it's hard to justify making them "Team Cap." I really think this becomes a moot point if you simply fix Cap's powers... then you won't be so boxed in by their abilities when it comes to your choices of teammates.


Again... these are just my thoughts on the matter. Would love to hear others' experiences and opinons on Cap, and any thoughts they might have.

token_legendary.pngicon_captainamerica.pngtoken_legendary.png
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Comments

  • amusingfoo1
    amusingfoo1 Posts: 597 Critical Contributor
    Thanks for writing this up. I got a glut of his covers right after he moved into Latest Legendaries; he's now my most-covered 5*, outside of the original three. I was trying to figure out if he might become decent with levels; it sounds like he doesn't, so I'll save my ISO.

    (Now if only that glut had been IM46 instead...)
  • We_are_Venom
    We_are_Venom Posts: 308 Mover and Shaker
    This is a good write up. Although limited, I had 2 covers for cap (yellow, blue) and two for IM (yellow, blue). Cap was near useless, to the point I cut him because he wasn't worth my scaling increase.
    Just like you mentioned, his blue is more detriment than benefit. Getting special tiles out is work, and having it removed for marginal damage and heal was almost never worth it.
    His yellow were often matched away in cascades, leaving only a couple to activate.

    IM by comparison I use all the time. His blue with 2* Magneto feeding is outrageous. Not only is it board shake, and damage, it also eliminates the other teams strong color! His yellow negates enemy attacks 3x as long as it's over 1700. Hulkbuster at 30 red AP? Lay down house party, and it only takes away 1!

    Cap really, really sucks. I tap every team I see him on as a 3* player. Not good.
  • OzarkBoatswain
    OzarkBoatswain Posts: 676 Critical Contributor
    9729 for 9 AP (1081/AP) is 25% lower than the much-lamented SS output at 10172 for 7 AP (1453/AP).

    A small correction. That SS damage is at level 550. At 450 he does 1171/AP.
  • jobob
    jobob Posts: 680 Critical Contributor

    A small correction. That SS damage is at level 550. At 450 he does 1171/AP.
    Ah, thanks... Great catch. Fixed OP!
  • wirius
    wirius Posts: 667
    For curiosity and to possibly make your post more valuable in the eyes of the developers =P , how much money do you spend championing those 5*'s when they come out? I would comment on the viability of your ideas except I lack experience with the character and have no standing to do so. Still, I love seeing these very carefully thought out writeups!
  • simonsez
    simonsez Posts: 4,663 Chairperson of the Boards
    wirius wrote:
    For curiosity and to possibly make your post more valuable in the eyes of the developers =P , how much money do you spend championing those 5*'s when they come out?
    ... because it's a really good idea for the devs to tailor the game design around the 5 people who spend money like it's on fire, and ignore everyone else...
  • GrumpySmurf1002
    GrumpySmurf1002 Posts: 3,511 Chairperson of the Boards
    simonsez wrote:
    ... because it's a really good idea for the devs to tailor the game design around the 5 people who spend money like it's on fire, and ignore everyone else...

    You mean like current state, where the quality of customer service responses are directly proportional to that?
  • jobob
    jobob Posts: 680 Critical Contributor
    wirius wrote:
    For curiosity and to possibly make your post more valuable in the eyes of the developers =P , how much money do you spend championing those 5*'s when they come out? I would comment on the viability of your ideas except I lack experience with the character and have no standing to do so. Still, I love seeing these very carefully thought out writeups!
    lol, I would rather not say!

    I'll put it this way... I have two small kids at home, so all my old hobbies have been neglected. Can't just leave them to play video games for hours, can't just go play golf after they go to bed, going out to bars isn't the best idea anymore, and I even sell my season tickets to football because traveling to games and spending all weekend partying and watching football doesn't work well with a 1-year old. But I can get out my iPad for 30 minutes at a time during naps or play for awhile after they go to sleep, and put it down at a moment's notice if Daddy is needed. MPQ is kinda my only hobby at the moment, so most of that cash I used to spend on all my hobbies gets funneled to it instead.
  • BlackSheep101
    BlackSheep101 Posts: 2,023 Chairperson of the Boards
    jobob wrote:
    I have two small kids at home, so all my old hobbies have been neglected.
    Amen, brother.
  • jobob
    jobob Posts: 680 Critical Contributor
    simonsez wrote:
    wirius wrote:
    For curiosity and to possibly make your post more valuable in the eyes of the developers =P , how much money do you spend championing those 5*'s when they come out?
    ... because it's a really good idea for the devs to tailor the game design around the 5 people who spend money like it's on fire, and ignore everyone else...
    Well, I wasn't trying to imply that it should be tailored around me.

    I just assumed that I was one of a relatively small group of players who have been able to champ all 7 of the 5* and get some play time with them, and thus give an opinion on Cap vs the rest of them... So I thought I would share my thoughts on him. My hope would be that they would rebalance him before other players had to experience his disappointing performance. I wasn't making a "I spend money, so do what I want!" demand or anything like that.

    And, hey... I could be wrong about him... Maybe I'm just missing the "right" way to play with him or the right team combo.
  • Vyshus
    Vyshus Posts: 18
    Your assessment is right, I bet when or if they tested him vs his counterpart his ability was still broken which would have made his dmg seem fair. Now that he's fixed deimurge should reevaluate his abilities and they also need to make Bruce Banner on Team Caps side.
  • OneLastGambit
    OneLastGambit Posts: 1,963 Chairperson of the Boards
    Spotted a slight oversight on your part OP..

    The penalty for non team players.

    For cap the penalty is he doesn't create two protect tiles (which you can easily get from a lot of other charcaters) meaning that it's not really that necessary to use team cap characters as if you don't then so what? You'll be minus 2 protect tiles- no big deal. This frees you up to use whomever you like without it being an issue.

    However 5Tony is a different story... You absolutely HAVE to use team IM characters because the penalty for not doing is very steep indeed. His red goes from high damage to ok damage (for 5* level) this heavily restricts team choices and flexibility.

    Its only a minor thing but it's something to consider none the less.
  • jobob
    jobob Posts: 680 Critical Contributor
    Spotted a slight oversight on your part OP..

    The penalty for non team players.

    For cap the penalty is he doesn't create two protect tiles (which you can easily get from a lot of other charcaters) meaning that it's not really that necessary to use team cap characters as if you don't then so what? You'll be minus 2 protect tiles- no big deal. This frees you up to use whomever you like without it being an issue.

    However 5Tony is a different story... You absolutely HAVE to use team IM characters because the penalty for not doing is very steep indeed. His red goes from high damage to ok damage (for 5* level) this heavily restricts team choices and flexibility.

    Its only a minor thing but it's something to consider none the less.
    The problem though isn't just the shield tiles... it's the lack of damage too. If 5IM gets triple damage for a full team... then why doesn't Cap?

    You say that 5IM restricts your team more, because his damage goes from ~9k to ~26k... while Cap has flexibility because his is always ~9k. That's not a point in Cap's favor IMO... it's just further proof that he needs tweaking. If you don't build a full 5IM team, you are in the same boat essentially as a Cap team.
  • chill21genlee
    chill21genlee Posts: 61 Match Maker
    Amen i had a run of covers for him now hes mynmost covered 5 star...and hes essentially worthless...skill set and dmg powee of an underpowered 3 star and his blue strips special tiles to boot..
    So pissed that this abomination is my most covered 5 star..im guessing they just didnt put enough thought into his conversion from a pve enemy...just didn't translate well unlike im.
    Blue ... remove most of the tile killing and chg healing fr burst to true
    Red .. should be cheaper hit wayyy harder and stun a random enemy (**** is up w a cap w no stun anyway)
    Yellow . . Should be cheaper and the friendly moves should be wayyyy stronger and or should not be on stupid cd tiles

    Thanks
  • SangFroid
    SangFroid Posts: 177 Tile Toppler
    As discussed his red should work like IM5* and count himself. Also instead of actively creating the protect tiles red should have a passive that each turn creates a strength 200 protect tile. That way every 8 turns he could in theory fire his blue (balances the cheap cost of blue by taking a while to fill up the 8 tiles. Maybe increase blue's cost to compensate so 9AP. This would make him a very easy 355 and actually make him a really solid 5* option.
  • amusingfoo1
    amusingfoo1 Posts: 597 Critical Contributor
    SangFroid wrote:
    As discussed his red should work like IM5* and count himself. Also instead of actively creating the protect tiles red should have a passive that each turn creates a strength 200 protect tile. That way every 8 turns he could in theory fire his blue (balances the cheap cost of blue by taking a while to fill up the 8 tiles. Maybe increase blue's cost to compensate so 9AP. This would make him a very easy 355 and actually make him a really solid 5* option.

    Having been "blessed" by twelve covers for him, I heartily approve. icon_e_smile.gif
  • jobob
    jobob Posts: 680 Critical Contributor
    Playing with Cap in the recent MoStorm PVP was a ton of fun, he is a great character as long as he's paired with that ONE SPECIFIC TEAMMATE.

    It really illustrates how bad he is otherwise, and how much more fun/useful he could be.
  • jobob
    jobob Posts: 680 Critical Contributor
    Now that the Devs are reworking characters more frequently... I really think Cap needs to be at the top of this list.



    ...It is also encouraging to see that Cage got the ability to fortify special tiles! That was one of the suggestions I mentioned for Cap months ago! Now that it's in the game... easy fix!
  • amusingfoo1
    amusingfoo1 Posts: 597 Critical Contributor
    Having played with him a bit, he'd be improved a lot by getting a protect tile for every non-downed ally, with a second for each one who's on Team Cap.
  • SangFroid
    SangFroid Posts: 177 Tile Toppler
    Adding this from his character post just to keep all the ideas in one place in hopes that D# takes a look.

    "I have been thinking and with the release of Gwenpool the Devs now have some new tools in their toolbox. They should create a "Cap's Shield" special tile (a la Chekov's Gun but cooler looking like BB motivation tile) that when you match it does damage to the opponent and when they match it creates a protect tile. The shield would then respawn on another random tile on the board and be persistent as long as Cap is not downed.

    Another suggestion is to have a passive that creates a power 100 protect every time he matches red yellow or blue. Then his blue becomes very useful and he becomes mid tier. His red should also count team members like IM46 red."